Minutes of Proceedings

Session: 2011/2012

Date: 30 May 2012

Venue: Room 29, Parliament Buildings

1:36 pm The meeting commenced in closed session.

4.  Briefing from Dr Malcolm McKibbin, Head of the Northern Ireland Civil Service

Agreed:  The Committee agreed to commence in closed session in order to consider a brief from the Clerk.

1:42 pm Mr Dallat left the meeting.

1:45 pm Mr Dallat entered the meeting.

1:47 pm Mr Girvan entered the meeting.

1:50 pm Mr Murphy left the meeting.

1:55 pm The meeting was suspended.

2:00 pm The meeting recommenced in public session.

1.  Apologies

Apologies are listed above.

2. Minutes of the meeting on 23 May 2012

Agreed: The minutes of the last meeting were agreed.

3. Matters Arising

Correspondence from the Department for Social Development

The Committee noted correspondence from Mr Will Haire, Accounting Officer, Department for Social Development providing an update on the completion of the ‘Working Smarter’ pilot following the Committee’s previous inquiry into ‘Creating Effective Partnerships between Government and the Voluntary and Community Sector’.

Agreed:  The Committee agreed that the C&AG would examine consultancy spend on primary research as opposed to deskwork  in C&V contracts and report his findings to the Committee.

Correspondence from University College Union

The Committee noted correspondence from Mr Jim McKeown, Regional Official, University College Union withdrawing allegations against PwC of breaches of confidentiality/data protection of individuals at the South East Regional College in correspondence previously considered by the Committee.

Agreed:  The Committee agreed that as a next step, C&AG would report back to it the findings of PwC’s report when it is published.

Correspondence from the Department for Regional Development

The Committee noted correspondence from Mr David Orr, Accounting Officer, Department for Regional Development providing an update previously sought by the Committee on the its progress on the commitments to the recommendations undertaken in the MOR on Road Openings by Utilities.

Agreed: The Committee agreed to forward the response to the Committee for Regional Development for its consideration.

2:12 pm The meeting went into closed session.

4. Discussion with Dr Malcolm McKibbin, Head of the Northern Ireland Civil Service

The Committee put questions to Dr Malcolm McKibbin, Head of the Northern Ireland Civil Service and Mr Stephen Peover, Accounting Officer, Department of Finance and Personnel.

3:36 pm Mr Hussey left the meeting.

3:42 pm Mr Hussey entered the meeting.

3:44 pm Mr Copeland left the meeting.

3:47 pm Mr Copeland entered the meeting.

3:54 pm Mr Hussey left the meeting.

4:06 pm Mr Girvan left the meeting.

4:08 pm Mr Dallat left the meeting.

The Committee discussed priorities for the Civil Service, key relationships and accountability, and transparency in public spending decisions.

Agreed: The Committee agreed on the basis of the discussion not to pursue further at this time its line of inquiry into NICS secondments to the private sector.

5. Issues Arising from the Oral Evidence Session on ‘Safeguarding Northern Ireland’s Listed Buildings’

The Committee considered an issues paper relating to the previous week’s evidence session.

Agreed:  The Committee agreed to proceed with the drafting of the report on the basis of its discussion and the issues paper.

6. Draft Committee Report on ‘The Transfer of Former Military Sites to the Northern Ireland Executive’ and ‘Report on ILEX Accounts 2010-11’

Correspondence from OFMDFM.

The Committee noted correspondence from Mr Noel Lavery, Accounting Officer, OFMDFM providing the information sought by the Committee following its evidence session on 25 April 2012.

4:17 pm Mr Copeland declared an interest stating that a solicitor named in the response from the Department has previously represented him.

4:18 pm Mr Dallat entered the meeting.

4:23 pm Mr Byrne left the meeting.

4:26 pm Mr McQuillan left the meeting.

Correspondence from Ilex

The Committee noted correspondence from Dr Aideen McGinley, Accounting Officer, Ilex pursuant to the Ilex evidence session on 25 April 2012.

4:27 pm Mr McQuillan entered the meeting.

4:30 pm Mr Dallat left the meeting.

7. Any other business

There was no other business.

8. Date, time and place of next meeting

The next meeting will be held on Wednesday, 6 June 2012 at 2:00 pm in Room 29, Parliament Buildings.

The Chairperson adjourned the meeting at 4:32 pm.

Mr Paul Maskey MP
Chairperson, Public Accounts Committee
6 June 2012

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